These two UNF College of Education and Human Services efforts enact a cultural understanding of the community at large by addressing the challenges low-income students face pre-college, allow the University to liaise with the Jacksonville community by providing inclusive opportunities for students who are underrepresented or first in their family to attend college, and provide UNF and the College of Education and Human Services the opportunity to expand its pool of applicants to more students from historically underrepresented backgrounds.
Two of the eight Alpha Cohort scholars at the official “Signing Day” for UNF Holmes Scholars.
UNF Holmes Scholars Program
In 2018, the University of North Florida was accepted as an American Association of Colleges for Teacher Education (AACTE) Holmes Scholars Institution. The AACTE Holmes Honors Program supports undergraduates from historically underrepresented groups interested in a career in teaching, school administration, or the professoriate.
Dr. Chris Janson, the director of the UNF Center for Urban Education and Policy, believes that these students will be change agents in multiple arenas, both during their college experience and as trained educators. “These scholars will not only graduate and impact countless students’ lives in classrooms, but they will also help our college explore and learn how we can ensure that ALL of our teacher candidates and faculty are more culturally responsive and competent,” Janson explained.
Inclusion in the Holmes Partnership, which consists of 33 universities in the United States, will enable the COEHS to grow its network of community and national partnerships while also making a real difference in the community. “The UNF Holmes Scholars will become a part of a high-impact network designed to increase the number of well-qualified educators from underrepresented groups in the field of education,” explained Dr. Diane Yendol-Hoppey, the COEHS Dean. “It will offer access to a wealth of local resources as well as opportunities to engage in national-level policy and advocacy efforts.”
In 2019, the College of Education and Human Services recruited eight Duval County high school students to be the first-ever cohort of UNF Holmes Scholars. They are currently enrolled and thriving as freshmen in the COEHS.
UNF Summer Bridge Program
With grant support from the Delores Barr Weaver Fund, the UNF Center for Urban Education and Policy (CUEP) hosted the first-ever “Summer Bridge” camp in July 2019 for rising seniors from urban high schools throughout Northeast Florida. Aimed at taking the fear out of the highschool- to-college transition, Summer Bridge campers are able to discover career pathways or academic fields of study (with an emphasis on teacher education), meet new friends, make professional connections and more. This weeklong program allows the UNF to expand its reach through community partnerships; enact a cultural understanding of the community at large by addressing the challenges low-income students face pre-college; liaise between the University and the Jacksonville community by providing inclusive opportunities for students who are underrepresented or first in their family to attend college.